I edited the thread title and here is what I'm thinking. When you look into the natural prey of varmints like weasels (and the cousins), skunks, snakes, etc. what you find is their number 1 prey is often rats and mice. For weasels, they say that rats, mice, moles. gophers, etc. make up nearly 90% plus of all they eat. If not for their nature of killing our birds, some might think the best thing you could have for a rat infestation would be a pack of weasels descending upon them.
Same for snakes, etc. Skunks are said to be efficient mousers on par or better than cats.
So it could be that these same predators that attack our birds to not arrive looking for birds, but instead are following the scent of rats and mice hanging around the coop, but being opportunistic killers, it is easy for them to transition to our birds. If all this is true, then it could be the best way to keep them at a distance is not to attract them in the first place, and that means we need to be vigilant with rats and mice.
So that means things like rat proof feeders, treadle feeders, feeding only in the day and keeping stored feed locked up safe somewhere.
But back to my original question.......for those of you who have had problems with these predators, prior to those bad guys showing up, did you also have problems with rats and mice that might have lead to the predators being attracted to your coop?